Wednesday, March 6, 2013
Vote: Most intriguing Big East game in 2013
By Andrea Adelson
Today is Big East schedule release day, and now we want to hear from you.
The full schedule and my initial thoughts have been posted. Now it is time to ask our loyal readers to vote on a very important question: Which is the most intriguing Big East game of 2013? I selected five based on the teams I think will be in contention for the Big East title this year, which is why you see Louisville, Cincinnati, Rutgers and UCF listed multiple times.
My vote in this poll goes to Louisville at Cincinnati, Dec. 5, in what could be the final Keg of Nails between the two teams. The Cardinals are headed to the ACC and no future meetings have been arranged as of yet, so we have no idea when/if these teams will meet again. But once again, the Big East made its schedule must-see TV on the last regular-season weekend.
Louisville is expected to start the season in the Top 10; Cincinnati has my vote as the No. 2 team in the Big East headed into the season. The Bearcats have won four of the past five, and nearly pulled out the upset last year in Louisville before losing in overtime. Only once in the last seven meetings has the game been decided by 10 points or more.
Rutgers at Louisville on Oct. 10 should also be interesting, for a few reasons. Both teams have short weeks to prepare, same as this past season (Rutgers is at SMU the week before; Louisville is at Temple). And it comes relatively early in Big East play, a different time slot from past history. These teams have traditionally met toward the end of the season. In fact, this is the earliest these two teams have played as Big East members. Rutgers should be the biggest test on the schedule up to that point, though you can make an argument for the game at Kentucky on Sept. 14.
As for the other games listed, I am intrigued to see how UCF stacks up against Louisville, as the incoming team with the best chance to compete for a league title; I am also intrigued to see if UCF will finally beat USF in a rivalry game the Big East needs to build up; and the Rutgers game comes at a critical time for the Bearcats, who must play the Scarlet Knights and Cardinals in two of the final three weeks of the season.